Europeans are divided between those who want the war in Ukraine to end as soon as possible, even if that means giving concessions to Russia, and others who believe Russia must be clearly defeated and punished.
According to a survey published on Wednesday by the European Council on Foreign Relations in Berlin, a relative majority of 35 percent of Europeans want a negotiated peace agreement with Russia as soon as possible, while 22 percent of those polled believe the war must continue and the West must refrain from offering Russia any concessions.
The survey polled residents in 10 European countries including the United Kingdom, Finland, France, Poland, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Spain, and Sweden in mid-May, three months after the war had broken out.
Respondents who want peace as soon as possible are in the majority in all countries except Poland, insisting the war must end even if Ukraine has to make territorial concessions to Russia. Italians are the least concerned about retribution for Russia, with 52 percent of those polled just wanting an end to the conflict that has destabilized the European economy and worsened the cost of living crisis. In contrast, just 16 percent of them would see the war continue.
A similar story can be seen in Germany where 49 percent want peace compared with 16 percent who back a continuation of the war. Romania follows with a 42:23 swing, France with 41:20, and Sweden with 38:22.
In contrast, 41 percent of Poles want Russia defeated and punished with just 16 percent supporting a negotiated peace agreement. In the eyes of most Europeans, there is a clear instigator for the outbreak of the war, with 73 percent of all respondents blaming Russia, while 15 percent believe the blame lies at the feet of Ukraine, the European Union and the United States.